Stories - Chapter 25
January 1994 to Present - Dolphin Cove, Ponte Vedra Beach


So I'm sitting at my desk in my Palm Valley trailer in September of 1992. I get a phone call from Karen McAlear and she says "Hi David, when are you going to get rid of that old truck?" Karen and I dated three separate times previously, beginning in 1979 (Summer/Fall 1979, Spring 1980, Fall 1981/Winter 1982). I had the truck (1972 Ford F-250 crew cab 4WD with 14/36.5X16.5 Grand Prix multi-purpose tires, it was bad, there are stories about it too)then. Karen had been back in Jacksonville from living in New York state since July of 1989, and finally got around to calling me. My feelings were a little bit hurt that she hadn't called me sooner, but I got over it. Karen and I have a lot of history and she had come back to take care of her aging Mother. I'm pretty sure I asked her out during that phone call to go to an upcoming Chet Atkins concert in Metropolitan Park. We went, it was raining, and we bailed and went back to Karen's condo in Shadowood, in Arlington. We hung out and reminisced about old times and her two cats, Suki and Dryfus, terrorized me. Little did I know that a new chapter in my life had begun.

Karen and I dated until May 15, 1993, when we were married by her friend Paula Massengil, on the beach in front of Pete's Bar, in Neptune Beach. That's a story unto itself. We lived together at my place in Palm Valley, which was, no kidding, half of a single wide trailer (that's another story too). Suki and Dryfus, Karen's cats, lived in a travel trailer I had, which had almost as much room as our living quarters. Karen was a good sport, but I rememember one day she said to me, "David, if you want to stay married, we have to get a bigger place." I agreed, and told her I didn't have any money to buy a house or pay more rent. The trailer rent was $200 a month and I sublet the other half. We discussed finances before we got married. Karen still makes considerably more money than me, and we had agreed to split expenses according to our incomes. By the end of 1993, Karen sold her Shadowood condo and used the proceeds to buy our current house in Dolphin Cove, Ponte Vedra. We moved out of the Valley in January 1994, although I kept renting the trailer and property there for several more years. I used it for storage, working on my dune buggy, and it was sort of a country get away. I was also attached to it as I had lived there for eleven years altogether. I had many fun times and meaningful experiences there. There was also a graveyard there where two of my dogs, Ninja and Madam, among numerous other pets, including cats, squirrels, and birds are buried.

There are many stories to tell, including getting active again with the Jax Beach lifeguards, several career changes, pets coming and going, trips to Costa Rica and Hawaii, meeting my daughter - Chris Parker, and much more. I will be adding them as time and memory permit and writing new stories as they occur.

January 29, 2010 (Karen's birthday)


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